May 6, 2021
Weekly Update
A Message from Principal Simpson
Dear Parents,

May is here! I am looking forward to warmer weather (hopefully, no more snow) and all of our fun, end-of-the-year activities!

Our virtue for May is Moderation: Keep yourself in balance. Focus both on accomplishing things in which you excel and those that you don't. Try new things.

As students wrap up their academics for the year, they may complain about classes that they don't like or subjects that are hard for them. We need to continually encourage them to give their best effort, whether it is a favorite subject or not. Spring fever is a real thing; and to help mitigate it, I encourage families to balance school with time outside as well as time spent together. 

I want to send a huge THANK YOU to the PTO and the BFA parent community! Teacher and Staff Appreciation week has been amazing. From the yummy food to the incredibly generous gifts--I speak on behalf of the entire staff when I say THANK YOU! We are so grateful for your kindness and support!

Next week, Student Council is sponsoring Spirit Week. Please see the article below for the theme of each day.

Happy Mother's Day to all the BFA moms. I hope your family spoils you this weekend!

Please don't hesitate to contact me with any comments, questions or concerns

Mrs. Simpson
Getting Ready for the 2021-22 School Year
Important Information from the Health Room
Current Families with Medicine in the Health Room
If your student has medication in the health room, please plan to pick it up between 9 a.m. and noon during the last week of school. Only a parent/guardian or a designated adult can pick up medicine. Parents also can request that their student pick up any remaining medicine, but parents must email Teri DeBellis in advance at with the request. She will put the medicine in a sealed envelope and send it home with the student. She will not release any medication to a student unless she receives a written request from the parent. 

If applicable, you also will need to pick up any medication stored in BASE, as we will not transfer medications to BASE for summer camp this year. All medications that are not picked up by parents will be disposed of (expired or not).

Students Who Plan to Take Medicine at School Next School Year 
For those students who take medicine at school, per Douglas County School District (DCSD), new medication forms are required at the beginning of each school year. Medication forms from the prior school year are considered EXPIRED.
In preparation for next school year, as in the past, prescription and over-the-counter medications will be administered to students at school only on the specific written request of the student's parent/guardian and with the written authorization of the student's physician.
Provider Medication Authorization Forms, Asthma Care Plans, Allergy Care Plans, and Medication Request and Release forms are available in the school office, on the school website (click on 'forms') and are linked below. If your student has an appointment with his/her physician during the summer, that's a good time to get the paperwork completed. Records can be emailed to the health office, faxed to 303-974-1738 or dropped off during BFA Annual Family Check-In.   
All prescription medications must be provided in the original pharmacy labeled container. The pharmacy label must match the accompanying Provider Medication Authorization. All over-the-counter medications must be provided in the original packaging, which includes dose and frequency information, the dose must match the Provider Medication Authorization.
Reminder about Over-the-Counter Medicine
Acetaminophen or any other over-the-counter medication cannot be administered at school without an order from the health care provider (Provider Medication Authorization Form). Ben Franklin Academy provides Acetaminophen in 80 mg chewable tablets and 325 mg pills. If your student needs a different dose or form, you will need to provide the medication.
Herbal and homeopathic remedies may not be administered at school.

Medical Forms Explained
Not sure which form you need to have completed? See the descriptions below:
Provider Medication Authorization Form: If your student will need a medication administered at school, either daily or as needed, please complete the top portion of this form and have the student's health care provider complete the lower portion of the form.
Asthma Care Plan: If your student has asthma and will have an inhaler or other treatment at school, have your student's health care provider complete this form. Also complete the Medication Request and Release Agreement (below).
Allergy Care Plan: If your student has a severe allergy and will have an epinephrine auto-injector or other medication at school, have your student's health care provider complete this form. Also complete the Medication Request and Release Agreement (below).
Medication Request and Release Agreement: If your student's health care provider has used their own form or if your student has an Asthma Care Plan or Allergy Care Plan, please complete this form.

Getting vaccinated is an important part of your student's school readiness and keeps children from catching and spreading diseases that can make them sick. Click here to read about the required and recommended K-8 vaccines. And, for information regarding the Tdap vaccine required before entering sixth grade, click here.

Information about the Nonmedical Exemption Process
Per the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, the process for claiming a nonmedical exemption has changed for the 2021-22 school year. We wanted to alert families about this early, so they have plenty of preparation time to adhere to the new guidelines, if applicable.
If you choose not to have your child(ren) vaccinated according to the current recommended schedule because of personal belief or religious reasons, you must submit a Certificate of Nonmedical Exemption to the school.

Nonmedical exemptions must be submitted annually, which means parents have to submit the certificate every new school year. (The school year begins on July 1, and runs through June 30 of the following year.) There are two ways to file a nonmedical exemption:
  • File the Certificate of Nonmedical Exemption WITH a signature from an immunizing provider, OR
  • File the Certificate of Nonmedical Exemption received upon the completion of the online education module.
Downloadable certificates and the online education module are available at

Thank you for adhering to these processes. As always, our highest priority is to keep all students safe at school.
Check Parent Portal Password Today!
As you may remember, there are two important steps parents need to complete before the start of every school year for your K-8 BFA student(s). Mid-summer you will go online to complete DCSD Express Check-In, and before school starts, you'll complete BFA Annual Family Check-In. In the next couple of weeks, we will have additional details on these processes. 
Returning Families:
BFA parents as well as parents who have had students at other DCSD schools should have a username and password for the Parent Portal already. We want to be sure you are prepared well before summer begins. Please take the opportunity NOW to login to the EngagED Parent Portal. If you're successful, you'll be able to login when Express Check-In opens. If you find that you do not know your username and password, please email BFA's registrar, Colleen Bobbin, by end-of-day tomorrow, May 7.

New 2021-22 Families:
Families who have never had a K-12 student in a DCSD school will receive an email from the district on or after July 1 to set up their account username and password.
BFA News
Calendar Reminders
Tomorrow, May 7, is an EXTRA Dress of Choice Day for all students in appreciation of your kindness and generosity during the CEC food drive.

Wednesday, May 12, is a remote learning day for all students.
Summer Camp Confirmed for June
Please Make Remaining Weekly Selections by June 4
We're happy to share that we have enough weekly Summer Camp participants to hold Summer Camp in June! There is still availability in June and throughout the summer, so please sign up today through MySchoolBucks!

We'll determine if we can host camp in July/August based on weekly sign ups we receive by end-of-day on June 4. Therefore, please plan to make your weekly selections for July and August by June 4, as without enough campers signed up for each week, we won’t be able to offer the program in July/August. If that's the case, we’ll let you know by close of business on June 8.
Tomorrow Final Day of Teacher and Staff Appreciation
This week is Teacher and Staff Appreciation Week and the BFA Parent Teacher Organization has been recognizing all of our SUPER teachers and staff! Take a look at the flier for details about the events they've planned and for ideas for how you can still honor the teachers and staff who make BFA such a special place for our children. You can also use this printable note template to let your BFA superheroes know how much you appreciate them!  
Uniform Consignment Sale this Saturday
Have your kids had a growth spurt or are you ready to get new uniforms for next year? If so, mark your calendars for the upcoming Uniform Consignment Sale from 10 a.m.-noon this Saturday, May 8, in the outdoor courtyard between the gyms. We have uniforms in all sizes and genders; see the flier for additional information and be sure to check it out!

Any unsold items will need to be picked up between 1-2 p.m. after the sale on May 8. Please note that items will not be held after the sale and we will be donating them as we do not have the capacity to hold more uniforms at this time.
If you would like to volunteer to help with the sale, please visit the SignUpGenius.
Help us WIN $500!
Due to COVID restrictions, it's been more than a year since we've had a successful, in-person Book Fair to help raise extra money for new books with special library binding. And, with the number of active readers at BFA, we can certainly use extra funds for buying new books and replacing well-loved books! So, we're asking everyone to please consider signing up for the DCL Summer Reading Program--the school with the most sign ups by July 31 will be awarded $500. The entire family can sign up, and those that sign up between May 1 - June 15 are entered into a drawing to win a special prize. Thanks for your support and happy reading!
Spirit Week
SPIRIT WEEK Begins Monday!
Student Council is planning one more Spirit Week to celebrate everything we've accomplished this year. Next week, May 10-14, students are encouraged to dress up for each of the themed days:
  • Monday, May 10 - Icon Day (from athletes to movie stars, and even TV/movie characters--dress as someone well-known)
  • Tuesday, May 11- Decade Day (pick your favorite historical decade)
  • Wednesday, May 12- Wacky Zoom Meeting Attire! (A new take on Wacky Wednesday--put together your craziest outfit and silliest hair)
  • Thursday, May 13- Beach Day (don your summer apparel)
  • Friday, May 14- Color Out Day (each grade is assigned a color--color your whole grade!)
  • Kindie - yellow
  • 1st - green
  • 2nd - dark blue/navy
  • 3rd - purple
  • 4th - orange
  • 5th - white
  • 6th - black
  • 7th- light blue
  • 8th - red
Sign Up to See Junie B.
The middle school musical, 'Junie B Jones' begins at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 21, and Saturday, May 22, at BFA. Join Junie B. on her first day of first grade, where many changes are in store: Junie's best friend Lucille has found new best friends so Junie B. makes friends with Herb, the new kid at school. Then, while in 'Mr. Scary's' class, Junie has trouble reading the blackboard — and she may need glasses. Add in a friendly cafeteria lady, an intense kickball tournament and a Top-Secret Personal Beeswax Journal, and first grade has never been more exciting.
Tickets are FREE but you must sign up to attend the performance.
Elementary Room Parents Needed
The Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) is looking for elementary (grades K-5) Room Parents for next school year! Being a Room Parent is a great way to meet your volunteer hour requirement, develop a positive relationship with your child's teacher and become more involved at school. If you are interested, please send an email to Amanda Trenck and Lauren Flint, co-room parent coordinators, K-5. 
Noodles and Co. Spirit Night Next Week
Please join us from 4-8 p.m. next Wednesday, May 12, at Noodles & Company in Highlands Ranch (1601 Mayberry Dr.) for our next PTO Spirit Night. Noodles will donate 25 percent of all qualifying online and in-restaurant sales to BFA. Ordering online? Use code: GIVING25 to have your order count toward the Spirit Night. Thanks for your support!
Save the Date for Volunteer Appreciation Night
The PTO is hosting a private, BFA-only volunteer appreciation night from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 27, at Pirate's Cove. Mark your calendars and LOG YOUR VOLUNTEER HOURS. You don't want to miss out on this fun event! Look for more details in the newsletter over the next few weeks. Questions? E-mail Denise Battista, PTO vice president. Happy logging!
Virtual Talent Show
The BFA Student Council would like to give students an opportunity to showcase their talents, so they are planning to put together a video compilation to be shown on the last week of school. If your child would like to film their talent to be included in either the elementary (grades K-5) program or the middle school (grades 6-8) program, then please fill out this Google Form as soon as possible: Talent Show Audition. Families will be contacted by May 7 to know if their video act will be included.
Extreme Fitness Summer Camp
Grab your friends and get signed up for this summer's fun, yet intense workouts. Focus will include speed, endurance, as well as total body strength and conditioning. Trainings will be from 9-10:30 a.m. every Tuesday and Thursday, June 8-July 8. Whether you are trying to stay in shape during off-season, or you're looking for a fun activity to do with your friends, Extreme Fitness will be a great physical activity to get outside and have fun with others. The camp is open to both current and next year's middle school students (grades 6th-9th). Early bird pricing is $125 per student, so sign up soon. Contact Mr. Macias or Ms. Svensen if you have any questions, or register using this link.
Community Events
CEC Updates and Final Meeting Details
The Community Events Committee is excited to announce their Board for the 2021-22 school year. Congratulations to the following members:
Chair: Becky Mayka
Vice-Chair: Alyssa Gale Freund
Secretary: Anneke DelPiccolo
Treasurer: Marissa Patterson
Amber Clendening
Amy Marks
Nikki Busto
Mindy Pooler
The committee has grown exponentially in the past two years and we are thrilled to welcome new members! If you are interested in learning more about the CEC and the events the committee plans throughout the school year, join them at their final CEC meeting at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, May 19, at Smokin Fins (1104 Cpl Max Donahue Ln #102, Highlands Ranch, CO 80129). Anyone interested in the CEC is welcome to join them (and maybe even bring a friend!). Please RSVP to CEC by Tuesday, May 18, so we can adjust our reservation as needed.
PTO Logo
Last PTO Meeting
Please join members of the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) for their end of year PTO Meeting! The meeting will be held in person from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Sunday, May 16, at Redstone Park in Highlands Ranch. The PTO will be providing boxed dinners from Modern Market and will have a variety of food options including vegetarian and gluten-free. Please RSVP using the SignUpGenius as space is limited and indicate on your sign-up if you have gluten-free and/or vegetarian dietary needs. We will do our best to accommodate. Hope to see you there!
SAC is a Great Way to Serve
The School Accountability Committee (SAC) will have their final parent meeting for the school year at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 20, and you’re welcome to join them. Being a member of SAC provides an excellent opportunity have an impact at BFA by reviewing school policy, advising the BFA Board and school leadership, and administering both the parent and student surveys. In addition, you’ll gain a better understanding of the inner workings of your family's school. Please consider joining them! 

At the May meeting, they will review the final three policies and elect next year's SAC officers. If you're interested in joining the SAC and/or putting your name on the ballot for one of the four SAC officer positions, please review the SAC bylaws for information on the SAC's duties and the roles of the SAC officers. Then email the SAC Chair Woody Haynes.
Ben's Brigade Picnic
Thanks to all the families who attended the Ben's Brigade picnic at Redstone Park! Although, it got a little cold last Sunday afternoon, everyone enjoyed the BBQ and excellent company.
CaveSim Returning to BFA!
The week of May 17, Cave Dave will be returning to BFA and will bring CaveSim to kids in full-day Kindergarten as well as students in grades 1-5. Invented by a caver and MIT engineer, CaveSim makes highly realistic artificial caves that teach STEM concepts. During the programs, students explore 60 feet of cave passages filled with artificial cave formations, and learn a huge amount about caves, conservation, bats, geology, biology, chemistry, and a host of other subjects. 
If you would like to help out, please see the SignUpGenius.
Parents of kids in grades K-5, be sure to look for information from your teacher about registering for this activity. To find out more about CaveSim, check out their website.
Science Fair
Students in grades 3 and 5 are currently working on Science Fair projects, and we could use YOUR help judging. You don’t have to be a science expert to participate, and the best news is that the judging will take place via Zoom! 

You’ll be able to conduct a judging session one-on-one with the students so they can present their projects to you online. But don't worry—you’ll have a little prep time before the judging starts so Mrs. Ward can walk you through some important information. There is a simple Google Form that we will use for judging each student.

If you would like to help out, and feel comfortable with the technology as described above, please consider signing up for a time slot. If you have any questions or concerns please contact Mrs. Ward.
Summer Volleyball Camp, Grades 5-8
Attention incoming 2021 fifth through eighth grade boys and girls...please mark your calendar for the BFA Summer Co-Ed Volleyball Camp which will take place July 19 - July 23 in the Thunder Gym! Registration is not yet open but see the flier for additional details. We will be monitoring and following all district guidelines, so please stay tuned. 
The camp is for enrolled BFA students only.
Please contact Kristen Haufschild with questions.
Upcoming Events
BFA's Guiding Principles
Our mission is to create young adults with character like America's founding Renaissance man, Benjamin Franklin: well-read, scientifically curious, and civically engaged.

Our students will excel academically through a challenging, sequenced curriculum that emphasizes math, science, the arts, and literacy. We will be a data-driven institution, focusing on individual students. Our students, teachers, parents, staff, and leaders will be held accountable for the success of our school. Finally, we recognize that an education is incomplete without fostering social emotional development, character, sports, and nature.

13 Virtues:
Temperance, Silence, Order, Resolution, Frugality, Industry, Sincerity, Justice, Moderation, Cleanliness, Tranquility, Purity and Humility.